Last week Terra Tech Corp., based in Irvine, California, won approval from the Securities and Exchange Commission to raise $6.8 million to build and operate medical marijuana operations in Nevada. This would make Terra Tech first publicly traded company that cultivates, distributes and sells marijuana.
“We were nervous, not knowing if they would run us around in circles or just say `No, find other sources of financing. In the end they kind of told us that, statutorily, they can’t tell us what to do in the space we’re in, their job is to make sure investors are aware of every risk.”
“I firmly believe this industry will be regulated like alcohol. If all goes well, I’m optimistic the federal government could end its prohibition in five to 10 years.” Peterson, Terra Tech’s CEO said in an interview.
There are other marijuana-related companies that are currently publicly traded such as Medical Marijuana Inc and Northsight Capital, as well as a number of others including WeedMaps Media Inc., PotBotics and GrowBox USA that are in various stages of IPO-planning. However there currently aren’t any public companies that grow marijuana. Terra Tech will be the first of its kind.
According to a report by ArcView Group, legal marijuana sales in the U.S. this year will total about $2.3 billion. By 2018, ArcView expects sales to exceed $10 billion.